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When director Jeff Tremaine and the members of Jackass were out shooting footage for their last theatrical endeavor, Jackass 2, they would up with so much material that they essentially had enough for two movies. The best of that material wound up in the theatrical film while the leftovers have been assembled here on this DVD and released as Jackass 2.5. So, going in knowing that this is the stuff that didn't make the final cut, is it worth watching?
If you dig Jackass, yeah, it is.
Not everything in here is comedy gold but there is enough funny and outlandish material in the film's brief sixty-four minute running time that those with an affinity for the rude, crude and tattooed humor that these boys create will want to give it a look. Things start off with a bit where Preston gets painted up like King Kong and Wee Man gets dolled up as Fay Wray. They sit atop a porta potty which in turn sits on the edge of a cliff. The rest of the crew fly remote control planes at the two poor bastards and everyone learns the hard way that Preston has a very serious fear of heights.
From there we see 'Dizzy Boxing' in which two guys are spun around on office chairs and then allowed to box one another inside what looks like a suite inside a high-rise office building. Bam makes a phone call to his mother before he heads to the beach where he flies a kite 'out of his ass.' This is exactly what it sounds like - no elaboration on the part of this reviewer is really needed!
Wee Man plays Matador to a small but pissed off bull, and Bam launches a rocket into his mom's house and melts the carpet. Preston gets pissed off when a giant clamp is attached to the back of his arm, and Wee Man pees in a water gun and surprises people wanting a cold beer with a golden shower. Bam hits a golf ball out of Dunn's ass and the rest of the crew get into it at the driving range, and Knoxville has his prostrate checked by a creepy Russian doctor. There's some fun Wild Boyz footage here where Steve-O begrudgingly lets a cobra bit an inflated condom out of his ass, and from there we see the whole gang head to India where Steve-O pukes a lot and Ehren lies on a bed of nails.
Preston takes a few shots from a paintball team in a place where no normal man would ever want to be shot, while Knoxville dresses up as surly senior citizen and prank the locals. The whole gang race mini-motorcycles to the sounds of Turbonegro inside a small grocery store resulting in mass chaos, while an insanely obese woman tries to give birth to Wee Man. Last but not least, Preston has to have some powder inserted into his ass to see if his farts will produce a dust cloud.
In between bits we hear from the guys involved about what went wrong and what they were trying for in the first place with some of these ideas. This makes Jackass 2.5 almost as much of a documentary as it does a compilation of nutty stunt footage and it also takes up a notable portion of the film's running time. That said, if you know you enjoy this material then you know you'll enjoy this release. Is it the best place for newbies to start? No, definitely not. And it isn't on par with the best of the TV show or the two theatrical films but there is enough raucous and raunchy humor here to satiate most of us even if it isn't something you're likely to return to as often as the best of their material.Video:
Paramount presents Jackass 2.5 in the same aspect ratio as Jackass 2, that being 1.78.1 and thankfully he transfer is enhanced for anamorphic sets. Picture quality is quite good considering that some of this material was shot under less than ideal conditions, and much of it was captured using handheld cameras. The interview segments, which were obviously planned with a little more detail and shot under more stable conditions than the stunt footage, do look noticeably better than the rest of the movie but nothing here looks bad at all, even the rougher snippets. Color reproduction and brightness levels are fine and if some fine detail is a little on the sketchy side, it's at least understandable why that is the case given how the movie was made.Sound:
The only audio option on the DVD is an English language Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo track with optional subtitles and closed captions provided in English only. Like the video, the quality isn't perfect due to the way that this material was shot but for the most part it gets things done without any serious problems. Dialogue stays pretty clear and there aren't any problems with hiss or distortion to complain about. The music is balanced nicely against the rest of the material and while the sound mix is hardly remarkable, it gets the job done nicely.Extras:
First up is The Making of Jackass 2.5 (23:30), which starts off with Knoxville stating that the movie is a product of the crew's inability to stop shooting for Jackass 2. From there we see interview clips with Knoxville, Steve-O, Chris Pontius, Ehren, Bam and the rest of the guys who talk about the various bits that make up the compiltion. Ehren talks about how he lost his tooth during the motorcycle/grocery store bit, and Preston talks about the troubles of working with little sand shovels and what it's like to get shot 'right next to the beanbag.' There's some fun behind the scenes footage here of the guys goofing off behind the camera and trying to get some of the stunts right, and it's fun to hear Wee Man's thoughts on Preston's fear of heights from the King Kong bit that they do together. Director Jeff Tremaine talks about the joys of cast members getting wounded in India where there is no easy access to a hospital, and Chris Pontius talks about drugs. There are bits and clips in here that didn't make it into 2 or 2.5, some of which is pretty amusing, and as such this is worth a watch - make sure you stick around for the closing comments from Pontius and Steve-O.
A second featurette, The Making Of Jackass The Game (21:23), shows the guys in ful on motion capture gear goofing off and doing their thing so that they can be recreated digitally for boys and girls all over the world to play with at home. It's kind of creepy when you think about it, but it is actually kind of interesting to hear from the guys and from Tremaine how they tried to keep the game in the spirit of the series. In between bits of interview clips we see the guys recording voice work and doing more motion capture. Pontius tries to sell the game by showing off his package while Knoxville emphasizes how bad the guys are at making slingshots. We also see the guys play testing the game and we get to hear their thoughts on the final product. While this is a bit promotional in nature, it's a lot more interesting and amusing than you'd probably expect about a documentary that focuses the making of a tie- in product.
A collection of Bonus Segments (48:34) is also included, and found here are more bits from India, Loomis making Steve-O puke, Wee Man riding a donkey, some great bits with Knoxville in his old man garb, a segment where Knoxville wanders around an urban area with garbage bags wearing a toxic waste suit and much more. There are also a lot of unused interview bits contained in here where the guys tell some interesting stories about the hazards of their work.
Rounding out the extra features are a photo gallery, a weblink, trailers for other Paramount DVD releases, animated menus and chapter stops.Final Thoughts:
While it stands to reason that the best bits were used in the film they were intended for, there are some decent leftovers to enjoy here in Jackass 2.5. While this isn't as funny as the two feature films the material here will please fans of the series and the extras are interesting and equally funny. Not an essential purchase for the casual fan, it does make for a solid rental and those who know they like the series will no doubt want to own it.
Ian lives in NYC with his wife where he writes for DVD Talk, runs Rock! Shock! Pop!. He likes NYC a lot, even if it is expensive and loud.